Mumbai: Driven by government’s move to defer hike in fuel prices, the Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex on Wednesday jumped over 72 points to 18,585 as investors bought heavyweights amid a firm global trend.

The Sensex, which ended on a flat note in the past two sessions, gained 72.19 points to 18,584.96, as stocks of State Bank of India, Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Hero Honda and Infosys recorded smart gains.

Similarly, the broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty increased by 23.80 points to 5,565.05.

Stocks ofthe largest drug maker by revenue, Ranbaxy surged 6.37 per cent to Rs 477.70 after reporting first quarter earnings on Tuesday that beat market estimates.

Brokers said investor sentiment picked up somewhat after Tuesday's meeting to hike fuel prices was postponed.

They said a mixed trend in the Asian region and higher openings in Europe helped the market.

Realty, metal, auto and consumer durables remained on the fore-front and drove up the market.

Tata Steel rose 0.73 per cent to Rs 593.35, and Sterlite Industries by 1.47 per cent to Rs 176.60.

Metal stocks gained on firming trend in the London Metal Exchange Index.

The most beaten realty sector index gained 1.40 per cent at 2,143.12, followed by metals index, up 1.01 per cent at 15,647.74. Auto sector index gained 0.95 per cent to 9,189.82 and consumer durables by 0.72 per cent to 6,201.43.

(Agencies)